My great grandfather Fred Smith, and my great Uncle Lenny.
Option 1. The DNA Analysis for Ancestry is true
This option supports the commercial DNA for ancestry companies claim, that I have Southern European ancestry. For this to be the case, my Southern European ancestors must have either a) been hidden in the gaps, the missing ancestors. b) be NPE (non parental events - biological ancestors that are contrary to recorded ancestors. Usually male). c) predate my genealogical record over the past 360 years or d) my recorded genealogy is faulty. I have badly researched my ancestry and have made mistakes.
What gaps are there? All of my generations are complete to and including my Generation 5. I have all of the names of my 16 direct ancestors at that generation (great great grandparents). All appear totally English, of English religious denominations. Their surnames and location were: Brooker of London (previously Oxfordshire), Shawers of London, Baxter of Norfolk, Barber of Norfolk, Smith of Norfolk, Peach of Norfolk, Barber (again) of Norfolk, Ellis of Norfolk, Curtis of Norfolk, Rose of Norfolk, Key of Norfolk, Goffen of Norfolk, Tammas-Tovell of Norfolk, Lawn of Norfolk, Thacker of Norfolk, and Daynes of Norfolk.
I have photographs of three of them.
Everything looks utterly English - the majority East Anglian.
The gaps start to appear at Generation 6 (G.G.G Grandparents) Three missing male ancestors - all missing fathers of illegitimate births. 29 out of 32 direct ancestors recorded though. All appear English again:
Brooker of Oxfordshire, Edney of Oxfordshire, Shawers of London, Durran of London (previously Oxfordshire), Baxter of Norfolk, Barber of Norfolk, Smith of Norfolk, Hewitt of Norfolk, Peach of Lincolnshire, Riches of Norfolk, Barber of Norfolk, Ellis of Norfolk, Goodram of Norfolk, Curtis of Norfolk, Larke of Norfolk, Rose of Norfolk, Barker of Norfolk, Key of Norfolk, Waters of Norfolk, Goffen of Norfolk, Nichols of Norfolk, Tovell of Norfolk, Tammas of Norfolk, Lawn of Norfolk, Springall of Norfolk, Thacker of Norfolk, Daynes of Norfolk, Quantrell of Norfolk. Oh, and a "Mary Ann" of Norfolk.
Again, all English, English religious denominations. Mainly rural working class East Anglian. No sign of any foreigners.
The record does start to really fall away at Generation 8. From then on, it's a minority of lines recorded, stretching back to the 1680's. However, at no where on my record of 207 direct ancestors, do I see anything that looks remotely non-English, never mind Southern European. No sign of any Catholicism anywhere.
Let's just consider percentages of DNA though.
Each grandparent gives me 25% on average.
Generation 3 (grandparent) 12.5%
Generation 4 (great grandparent) 6%
Generation 5 (great great grandparent) 3%
Generation 6 (G.G.G grandparent) 1.5%
Beyond then genetic recombination starts to really kick in, and you may have zero DNA from any particular ancestral lineage. It get's washed out. Only if it comes down from a number of lines is admixture highly likely to survive further back.
23andMe (V4 AC in spec after phasing with one parent) claims that both of my parents had 2% Southern European DNA. That takes it back to around MY Generation 6 or 7. Sure, I'm missing 9% of Generation 6, and 20% of Generation 7. My Southern European ancestors could have admixed then. But what are the chances of it happening on both sides? Possible, yes. I think unlikely though. No Southern European names or religions passed down. When was this? Around 1780 to 1820. Okay, if I want to piece national history into it, how about The Peninsular Wars (1807-1814)? The Royal Norfolk Regiment took an active part in that campaign. Could I have (presumably male) ancestors through both of my parents, that brought back Portuguese wives? It is a possibility. I'll acknowledge that. But am I weaving history in order to make it fit the DNA analysis?
FT-DNA (FF My Origins) claims that I have 32% "Southern European" ancestry. No sign of it in family history or photography. Too much likeness of recorded fathers. Okay, maybe it goes further back, but on multiple lines? I think that we are pushing this one. What is the chance of so many Southern Europeans given my above recorded or known English ancestry. It couldn't have happened.
DNA.land gives me 19% Southern European, including 13% Balkan. The same problem as the FT-DNA analysis. It just doesn't wash. It cannot fit.
Therefore I conclude:
- FT-DNA and DNA.land claims of my Southern European percentages cannot realistically be explained by gaps or missing ancestors.
- 23andMe claims of 2% Southern European could be explained by the missing gaps - just! But would need quite a coincidence to be on both sides, just in those gaps.
That pretty much covers it for gaps, NPE's, etc. If any Southern European on the other hand, predates my genealogical record, then it would need to be on multiple lines, and to have lost all sign of Southern European surnames, religions, and traditions. I haven't seen any history of a mass Southern European migration to England 600 - 400 years ago.